Key Learning points
The purpose of the simulator is to give you insight into the issues raised by the case; to illustrate the difficulties of co-ordinating operations and strategy in a growth market; and to understand the dynamic interconnections among a firm, its market, and its competitors.
- Business systems, like other complex social systems, show complex behaviour over time
- This complexity is caused by the feedback that occurs in all real-world cases, whether reinforcing growth (e.g. from word-of-mouth amongst passengers), imposing limits to growth (e.g. failure to provide sufficient aircraft) of triggering rapid collapse (e.g. pressure on staff driving resignations, which further raises pressure on those who remain)
- Good managerial policy depends on detecting – and responding appropriately to – well-chosen performance indicators.
- Management performance in this aim is typically undermined by misperceptions of how the systems they are trying to control are likely to behave, due to the feedback caused by this complexity.
The flight simulator is a laboratory in which you can systematically explore the consequences of different strategies without risking the fortunes of the real enterprise.